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Orchids & Botanical Exploration

January 10–April 5, 2015

Discover the allure of the orchid…and the global exploration it inspired.

Wander through warm, tropical plant collections peppered with colorful orchids, enjoy a radiant display of hundreds of blooms in the Dorothy M. Davis Showhouse, and forget the winter chill.

Dive into the rich history of botanical discovery and the plant hunters who traveled the world in search of the exotic and unknown. In the Cardinal Health Gallery, Plants in Print: The Age of Botanical Discovery reflects five centuries of plant exploration through a collection of unique, rare books and botanical illustrations. Additional information is shared throughout the Conservatory's plant collections.

Family Activities
Children can embark on their own plant hunting expeditions with an activity journal and interactive base camp.  Pick up a journal at the Visitor Center to complete activities as you tour the Conservatory. Free with admission. 

Weekend family activities, crafts and entertainment are scheduled throughout the exhibition. Learn more. 

Orchid Talks
Learn about the wonders of the orchid species.
Daily, 2pm

Orchid Nights
Warm up at the Conservatory this winter. Open until 9pm on select evenings. Click here for hours. Live tropical-themed music on Saturday evenings at 7pm.

Orchid Q & A
Central Ohio Orchid Society members answer questions about orchid care.
Sundays, March 1, 15 & 29, 1–4pm


Blooms & Butterflies

March 7–September 27, 2015

Spring returns with the emergence of hundreds of colorful, exotic butterflies. Watch them take flight in the Pacific Island Water Garden, a tropical haven filled with bright nectar blooms. Daily presentations at 1 and 3pm share more about this fascinating species, and related family programming is offered throughout the season.

Opening Day Breakfast
Saturday, March 7, 8am–12pm
Catch flipped pancakes, and enjoy sausage, orange juice and coffee for an all-you-can-eat breakfast. No reservations required. Breakfast is $4 per person, children ages 12 and under eat free, general admission applies.

Spring Bulb Show

Spring, 2015

More than 70,000 tulips, narcissus, crocus, hyacinth and other vibrant stars of season fill the Conservatory’s gardens and courtyards for a dazzling celebration of spring.

Bonsai Show

April 11–September 27, 2015

The Conservatory’s bonsai collection is showcased among a serene display of tropical plantings in the Dorothy M. Davis Showhouse. Enjoy tropical and hardy bonsai and explore the history and technique of these horticultural works of art.

David Rogers’ Big Bugs

May 16–September 27, 2015

Explore enormous insect sculptures created from fallen or found wood, cut saplings and branches, tree bark and other natural materials. Ten installations include an 18-foot tall praying mantis, a spider’s web that’s four yards wide, and a butterfly with a wingspan broader than average human height.

Scary Plants

October 3–November 15, 2015

This Halloween season take on the plant world includes pumpkin carvings like you have never seen before. Nationally exhibited artists from Villafane Studios carve humorous, weird and wild characters and display them in the Cardinal Health Gallery.

Merry & Bright

November 21, 2015–January 3, 2016

Feel the spirit of the season surrounded by hundreds of poinsettias and seasonal foliage. Enjoy delightful entries in the annual gingerbread competition, a Paul Busse model garden railway and an array of family activities. Select evenings feature live entertainment and festive lighting throughout the Conservatory.

Savage Gardens


Savage Gardens: The Real and Imaginary World of Carnivorous Plants is a rentable exhibition that was developed and designed by Conservatory staff. A multi-layered, multi-media exhibition, Savage Gardens tells the story of carnivorous plants and their astounding ability to adapt to inhospitable habitats.

Combining science, botany, art, humor, and hands-on activity, Savage Gardens reaches all ages with its rich components. Four monumental sculptures render viewers bug-sized, while interactive and interpretive elements educate and entertain.

The Conservatory has worked with the artists to ensure the portability of the large sculptures and other components. Learn more about detailed specifications and images of the components, as well as some of the media coverage that Savage Gardens received while on view at the Conservatory. 
Savage Gardens was developed and created by Franklin Park Conservatory and Botanical Gardens and Tork, Inc. The work displayed is protected by copyright and any copying is strictly prohibited.

About Tork, Inc.
Tork is a team of experienced and versatile trained artists headed by owners Mark Lagergren and Tony Ball. Tork has been creating unique sculptural installations and functional works for commercial and individual clients for more than 10 years. Adept at working on both large-scale public installations and small detailed objects, we collaborate with architects, designers, and contractors to meet site specific goals. Our sculpture has been placed in a variety of environments including public parks, playgrounds, gardens, hospitals, museums, corporate interiors and exteriors, and restaurants. We specialize in metal and resin design, fabrication, sculpting, and casting in unique combinations of materials. Learn More